Does Drinking Water Actually Burn Calories?


| 9 Comments
Over the summer I worked with a kid who was a nutrition major, and he told me something about how for every ounce of water you drink one calorie is burnt.  Since I was trying to lose weight this summer I figured I'd try drinking just water and see how it goes.  Well it worked and I ended up actually losing a lot of weight (although I think a lot can be contributed to the fact of just eating healthier in general and exercising more).  But I was thinking of a topic to blog about and wondered if this was actually true and if so, why?

This site says that it IS true and does a pretty decent job of explaining why.  Basically what it says is that it's the temperature of water that matters the most, as it takes one calorie to raise the temperature of one gram of water.

This also got me thinking that if water burns calories do other drinks burn calories as well?  Although I couldn't really find any information about this on the internet, my guess is that every drink DOES burn calories, about one per ounce I'm assuming.  But since there are no calories actually IN water, and there are tons of calories in other drinks, the net loss of calories only comes from drinking water.  Get what I'm saying?




9 Comments

In regards to your question raised about all drinks burning calories, the answer is yes. Everything you consume takes calories to burn, but it is a matter of how many calories are in the food/drink that makes the difference. Water is calorie-less, so drinking it actually is consuming negative calories. The same is true for eating many fruits and vegetables. Your body will burn more calories processing the food then are actually in the food. These are all things dieters should remember!

When reading your post, I thought of another point that I had read about online a few weeks ago. Many people mistake hunger for thirst, and end up eating instead of drinking water. According to this article: http://www.pureandhealthy.com/blog/2010/08/hungry-you-could-be-confusing-it-for-thirst/

This article discusses that the thirst mechanism in humans is very weak. Because of this, the body tends to think that it is hungry when sometimes, it may just be thirsty. It is also hard for humans to distinguish between the two because the symptoms of dehydration, such as feeling cranky, dizzy, or weak, are very similar to those of hunger. When humans begin to feel these symptoms, they tend to eat more often than drink water. Another point that relates to your post is that drinking more water fills you up. This helps to prevent overeating, which could potentially lead to weight loss.

Basically, the article says that in order to make sure that your body is not mistaking hunger for thirst, you should drink a cup of water and wait 15 minutes before deciding if you are hungry. If you were just thirsty, then you would feel satisfied after the water. If you truly are hungry, you would still feel unsatisfied. This is when you should grab something to eat.

I have to say that my favorite thing about this post is that if you think about the intake of water it should be a no brainer because you intake zero calories and loose one. Water is so healthy for you because there is no sugar or added flavors so the thought that by staying healthy and loosing calories at the same time is occurring is an obvious choice in hydration. I believe that what you are saying makes total sense while we may jose calories from other drinks there are so many more calories in soda or tea that you gain more calories than you loose. This site explains why drinking water is so healthy for you especially as a child.Water is the way to go! I am actually going to start only drinking water in the next few weeks maybe for the third blog post period and try the theory out. I would like to see if one could disprove the freshman fifteen theory if one only drank water. I will let you know how it works out if I get the experiment going.

Another way to think to look at why you lost this weight would be the fact that you cut out any other type of beverage other than water. I used to be an avid coke and juice drinker. I knew that coke was not good for me, but I had always thought that juice would have only a small amount of calories. Unfortunately this was not true at all. I noticed this in April when I found out that on average juice has about 140 calories per 8 fluid ounces. I decided to cut juice and pop out of my diet. This caused me to lose a significant amount of weight. By drinking water instead of these other drinks, I was cutting a large amount of calories out of my daily diet since water contains no calories. It seems as if according to your article and mine together, water can have many benefits for one who is looking to cut down a few pounds.

Calorie counts for some common drinks:
http://www.webmd.com/diet/calories-in-drinks-and-popular-beverages

I had never heard of the idea that drinking water, or any other kind of drink for that matter, could help you burn calories! There have been so many myths in the past and even still being brought up about weird ways to burn calories. I researched about other interesting ways to burn calories to further continue this blog! According to Susie J, here are the top 5 ways to burn calories without having to do anything too strenuous:

1. Eat a hot pepper - the American Chemical Society found a natural compound in hot peppers that help reduce the growth of fat cells
2. Eat soy beans - studies have shown that the greater the soy bean consumption, the greater the amount of weight loss; researchers believe soy beans contain anorectic peptides that boost one's metabolism
3. Drink a warm glass of water each morning with lemon - lemons act as a blood sugar stabilizer to keep metabolism up and continue to increase weight loss
4. Eat all meals, no skipping - messing up your internal food schedule can mess up metabolism and end up doing more harm than good
5. Cook vegetables in broth - instead of cooking vegetables in butter, cook them in broth; they taste better

this is exactly why Water is the fundamental principle of life's existence. not only does it contribute to our biological patterns but also contributes to the geographical patterns and essentials on Earth. Water is an amazing liquid indeed. also, what would make this article more compelling if there was a study included with a double blind placebo trial that showed people who drank water and how much weight they loss and people who didn't and with those details.

It is funny that someone actually blogged about this topic because I too was wondering the same thing. In high school, my lacrosse coach was always getting on me and my teammates about how we needed to eat healthier to get in better shape for the season. He urged us to drink a lot of water instead of snacking because he claimed that it would make us feel full and it would burn calories to make us lose weight. I never bought that, but now that you posted this article I have completely shifted sides. I for one will definitely try this out and see if it makes me lose weight as a result. Also, I do agree that there should be some sort of double-blind placebo test to be done in the near future to see if this holds true. The variables obviously would have to play a big part such as diets, metabolisms, and eating habits, but overall I think that a study of this matter should be done.

A couple of years ago I made the conscious decision to switch my main drink of choice from juice, gatorade, or soda to water. I noticed that when I did this, I stopped gaining weight. At first, I wondered why this happened. But it all makes sense to me now. I drink a lot of water per day, and while I do not generally watch what I eat or exercise, I still will not gain unwanted weight in fat. The fact that drinking water burns calories explains this and I am now encouraged to continue drinking water throughout the day.

Although it is true drinking cold water can burn some calories regulating temperature, it will not give results on the scale. One pound of fat equals 3,500 calories so it would take about 3,500 glasses of water to see a difference on the scale. If each glass burns one calorie and you drink the recommended 8 glasses of water a day it would take 437.5 days to loose one pound.
Drinking water is a great way to regulate health but in the end it would take a long time to see results on the scale.

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